Your task was to find information on the formation of a diabolic cult within the city. The basement was pitch black and you found a room with bloodstains from the floor to the walls.
A little devil is cleaning the floor in that room. It was a little devil who you interrogated and revealed that there were some rooms in the back where you could find the sacrificial chambers.
You follow the lead of the little devil, who seems friendly. He is happy to talk about the evils of his surroundings, including “killing and maiming, perverting and all that good stuff”.
It’s easy to believe that this little man will give you all the information. But, what if he presses on one of the blocks in the wall and the whole floor falls?
As scorpions flood the ground, you can see the little devil laughing and flying from below.
“This is sure to get me some points!” He smiles and says, “Don’t forget about dying!” as he disappears. The ceiling begins to close. Welcoming to the 5e Imp Guide.
What is an Imp?
The Imp is a legend that has been passed down through the years, and for good reason. This little man is mischievous and looks for trouble.
He can also help other people to have fun. Let’s now see how this term changes from history to our favorite game.
The Imp is a mythological creature from Europe that looks a lot like fairies and demons. These tiny devils appeared in many stories throughout the medieval period. They went through many transformations.
They were basic mischievous creatures, with simple motivations and joyful attitudes, starting from their Germanic roots. In the sense that they weren’t malicious but playful, they were very similar to leprechauns.
This image underwent many changes during the Medieval Period when it entered Christian folklore. Germanic myths said that demons weren’t necessarily evil and could even be attendants to the gods.
Demons, in Christianity, were unholy beings and thus a representation of the worst aspects of humanity. From being little pranksters, imps became full-on servants of Satan.
This transformation gives us the Imps as their most common representation. They are lesser beings who serve a higher entity with playful charisma, and a wicked mentality.
They murder to please a Demon Lord. They steal children and deliver them back to his Hag Master. They are essentially the “Minions”, but they are less cute and eviler.
We reach 1974 at this point and the Imp, in the 1st edition, makes his debut. This little monster looks very much like the one he will end up with, even though it is only the beginning of the game.
Two-foot tall, flying evil monster with darkvision and shape-changing. His ultimate goal is to corrupt the souls and lure them to Hell.
Although it was more dangerous in the first edition than in the fifth, the flavor is the same.
There were many Imps in earlier editions. There are many colors available, including dark reds and even opaque blues and browns.
They can transform into human society by merging with it using rat, raven, or spider forms. They were also able to transform into goats in older editions.
As with all devils, their goal is to corrupt souls and be elevated to greater power. There are two types: those who roam free and those tied to contracts in the Nine Hells with others.
An Imp could be given to the Pact of the Chain warlock by his patron as his familiar. The Patron would be credited with corrupting the soul, not the Imp.
This is why the Imp would rather go free than condemn souls.
Although the Imp’s stat block is quite weak, it’s mostly about knowing how to use it. Let’s take a look at it.
This creature has a low HP and a mediocre AC, with a CR of 1. However, it has a flying speed of 40 which makes him faster than most characters.
His skills are varied and well-rounded. He has low strength but high dexterity. His skills are mostly Charisma-based with decent charisma.
This little creature is truly online through his actions. He can first shape change to become a spider, raven, or rat undercover.
Although it has a high saving throw, it can inflict a deadly poisoning attack. His most powerful ability is his ability to turn invisible while maintaining concentration.
A breakdown of his capabilities
A set of abilities such as this can lead to many things. We can first deduce the purpose of this monster by looking at his ability scores. He is both a trickster and an assassin.
This man is extremely dexterous and invisible. It is nearly impossible to spot this creature for low-level parties.
It’s easy to overlook speed, but this is a huge mistake when we consider flying creatures. Your Imp would fly 40 feet at top speed, making it almost impossible for front-liners to catch you.
You can go invisible and strike directly at the weak link (looking at the low-level wizard), killing him or just flying off to the top. You can then turn invisible once more and continue.
This DnD Monster would likely die in just one or two hits, but with enough cunning, the DM might be able to make an interesting challenge by using his immunities and residing in a favorable setting.
It is safer to encounter an Imp on a plane steppe than it is to find it on the top of a volcano, where it can swim in the lava if it wants.
His shape-changing ability is another advantage. The monster can pass unnoticed in the middle of a city like a rat.
There are many spiders in caves. Ravens can fly fast and can even be used to carry messages.
Add to that his invisibility and you get an invisible spider capable of seeing through magical darkness. There is no better spy than him.
Finally, his sting. Do the math. 1d4+3 poison and 3d6 piercing deal average damage of 15 each. These levels of mage have less than 8 HP.
He could be killed in one hit. If you can crit the enemy and he fails his saving throw, you can send a level 2 Barr to sleep in one go. This devil is irritating!
How to Play it?
We’ve talked about his abilities, but how should they be used? And, most importantly, how do we stop him from playing the game with them. These are the real questions.
This creature is extremely stealthy, as we have already said. Imps have a +5 stealth, invisibility, and flying speed.
This creature is also capable of climbing spiders, making it impossible to detect them. An ally who can pass this test inadvertently is valuable even to high-ranking parties.
His charisma is a powerful asset that makes them diplomatic and cunning with words. They can convince a novel, Paladin, that they are on his side and then betray him.
They enjoy trickery, and they don’t just do it well. They enjoy having fun and can have fun with everyone.
We must also talk about their favorite pairs. They are great with hags and can do their bidding, steal children, spy on the locals, and so forth.
They are also great with wicked magicians who can use them to be butlers or alarms.
Warlocks look great because they already have a contract to benefit from the interesting relationship that could arise with this couple.
Remember that Imps can be found in the Nine Hells and are free to roam around, but they may also serve stronger devils.
Imps for players
Last but not least, discuss the possibility of the characters becoming friends with an Imp. There are two options.
One PC can be a Pact of the Chain Warlock member with an Imp familiar.
The other is the DM who decides to use the Monster Manual suggestion and give a spellcaster player an Imp friend. Let’s take a look at both of these options.
An Imp can be chosen as a companion by a warlock who has taken the Pact of the Chain feature. The Imp is the most familiar spellcaster could have.
It can fly at a reasonable speed and can shape change. It has it all. That is why DMs should be aware of these facts and how to make this broken familiar a fair deal.
Your players can have fun with fire. But there are two things you should remember: Imps are terrible taste-tricksters.
They won’t mind losing an arm or two of their masters, but if they are given the task to help someone, they might do it in a… humorous way.
You can be creative. The Warlock’s Patron may give the Pact of the Chain to his Warlock as a gift. He might get mad if the Warlock treats his gift poorly.
The Imp must obey his master. However, the master should not be offended by its absurdity or he may become angry.
There is also the possibility that a party might encounter an Imp free-roaming the world. Instead of killing him, they may decide to make friends with it.
The DM can let this happen and allow the party to play with it. It can also be very entertaining.
Remember that Imps are evil devils who want to corrupt their master more than any other creature in the world.
Every DM can make as many devils as he likes, but this is the general rule.
The Imp might still be free, but he decides to join the adventurers for his purposes. This Imp could be less evil and just want to have some fun with the group he has come to love.
Or maybe he is just trying to get away from them when he can. These Imps can be used by the DM as NPCs to help them move around the party and perhaps even reappear later.
Another way for an Imp to stay with a group is to sign a new contract. These Imps are like the Minions. They are just looking for a master that is more evil than the one they serve.
Their goal is to find a powerful master, corrupt him or find one already evil and ensure he doesn’t wander off the track.
Can Imps See Invisibility?
They can’t. His Devil Sight ability allows him to see through magical darkness and not see invisible creatures.
His perception isn’t very good, so it would be difficult for him to find invisible creatures.
Can Imps wear armor?
As with all monsters the DM can give them whatever perk they wish. The player can talk to his DM about Imp familiars to agree.
How big is an Imp?
Imps can be described as tiny creatures that are 2 feet tall. This is quite large for such a small creature.
They are small but have long wings and a tail that can make them appear larger if they grow.